Welcome to the parish of St Austin's and The English Martyrs

The Churches of St Austin's, Wakefield, Est. 1828 & English Martyrs, Wakefield, Est. 1932

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Parish/Ukraine: UPDATE

From Monsignor David Smith

Ukraine Appeal:  The magnificent total of £8,375.45 has been raised by the impressive and various efforts of our parishioners.  £7,325.45 has been sent to Aid to the Church in Need and £1,000 to the CAFOD Ukraine appeal.  A further £50 was sent directly to Aid to the Church in Need.  There may be also other donations which have been sent directly.  This is a truly impressive result achieved by so many of our parishioners who have arranged these events and those who have supported them.  We really do need to congratulate ourselves in responding so generously and at such speed to an urgent and desperate need.  Further donations are welcome and will be forwarded to Aid to the Church in Need.  Very Many thanks to all concerned.  


From Catholic Care:

Ukrainian Refugees: If you speak Russian or Ukrainian or if you would like to be part of our welcome teams that are supporting refugees arriving in our parishes, please contact sue.parsons@catholic-care.org.uk  Please check our website for regular updates.  https://www.catholic-care.org.uk/. 


To see how the parish raised the money and awareness please read on...

“During this time of Lent, our prayer and fasting will be a plea for peace in Ukraine, bearing in mind that peace in the world always begins with our own personal conversion, following Christ.” Pope Francis



As part of this year’s Lenten Observance, the people of our parish will focus on the urgent needs of the suffering Ukrainian people. Bishop Marcus reminds us that, “Our first response as Catholics must be to pray earnestly for the suffering people of Ukraine and for those who have had to leave their homes to seek a safe refuge for themselves and their family. We must also pray for peace with all our hearts.” The situation in Ukraine calls for a practical response too. At this moment in time, Aid agencies have found themselves overwhelmed by donations of clothes and goods so, for this Lenten period, financial donations, along with your prayers, are the priority please.

To see our weekly Parish’ Ukraine Appeal Newsletter

Week 1: 12/13 March

Week 2: 19/20 March

Week 3: 26/27 March



Our 2nd Sunday of Lent ‘Emergency Financial Appeal’ raised £4200 for the people of Ukraine. Thank you for your great generosity. Our ‘Parish/Ukraine: Lent Campaign’ continues to create awareness and encourage involvement in raising funds to supply humanitarian aid. Ongoing donations can be made by cash or cheque – made payable to St Austin’s Church – in an envelope addressed to Fr David (marked ‘UKRAINE EMERGENCY APPEAL’) and put through the Presbytery door. To give electronically (or ‘gift aid’ your donation), see: acnuk.org – ‘Ukraine Emergency Appeal’. Bishop Marcus also suggests some charities that you may like to support, please see: dioceseofleeds.org.uk/news. Thank you.


Please listen to this inspiring 3 minute recording from an eyewitness to the power of prayer in Ukraine. For more about Prayer for Ukraine please see: acnuk.org/resource/prayersforukraine & cbcew.org.uk/pray-forpeace-in-ukraine.


Please come pray with us for peace and in support of all those who are suffering because of the crisis in Ukraine. Please click this link for dates for your diaries for the coming week (updated each week throughout Lent).



Please support our Parish/Ukraine fundraising events in these coming weeks. Click this link, with dates for your diaries, for fundraising events organised by the people of our parish throughout Lent.



Below are some ideas you can use for raising much needed donations for the Lenten Ukraine Appeal, but feel free to come up with your own!


For Children

Spring flower sale
Children can pot spring bulbs and sell to neighbours, family and friends. Flowers could be in the Ukrainian colours (blue and yellow), such things as tete a tee (mini daffodils), hyacinths, crocuses, tulips. Lovely Easter gifts.
Guess the number of sweets
Use a jar or container and fill with wrapped sweets. Count them and then go round neighbours, friends etc and charge for a guess at the correct number. Record name, address and their guess. When enough people have guessed, contact the winner (or nearest guess) with their sweet prize.
Name the teddy
If your child has a lovely teddy in good condition, that they are willing to donate, they can name him/her, then create a grid of names for youngsters to try and guess the correct one (for a small fee). The correct guess wins the teddy.
Bun sale
Children can get involved with baking fairy buns, biscuits, Krispie Easter buns etc and sell to local friends, family, neighbours.
Bird feeder
Create simple bird feeders to sell to neighbours. Either using pine cones, with string tied near the base to hang from a tree, coated in peanut butter and roll in bird seed, chopped nuts and dried fruit. Alternatively, melt suet/lard in a pan and mix above ingredient’s in (1 part fat to 2 parts fruit/nuts). Get a yogurt pot and make a hole in the base, loop string through and knot securely. Fill with fat ingredients and set in the fridge. Remove pot once set.

For Families

Soup and roll tea
Instead of a larger meal or takeaway, opt for a simple soup and roll, and donate the money you’ve saved.
Cake raffle
For anyone who has a talent for cake decorating, bake a cake and decorate. Sell raffle tickets to friends and neighbours to win the cake.
Walk rather than drive
Walk to school, work or the shops. Calculate how much money you might save in petrol/parking and donate the savings. Great for your health too!
Ask for donations of items to create an Easter hamper (word of mouth, social media, neighbourhood group chats etc). Items could include Easter eggs, spring bulbs, wine, other treats. Create your hamper(s) and sell raffle tickets locally to win the prize.

For Parish Groups

Raffle ideas
Ask local businesses/restaurants to donate some of their products or services for your parish Ukraine fundraising raffle. Ask family, friends or neighbours for donations of unwanted gifts. Sell the raffle tickets after each Mass or locally to your neighbours to win the prizes.
Coffee Morning and bun sale
Get together in your groups, homes or after Mass in the parish rooms to provide tea and coffee with buns/cookies on sale. Use this event to sell the raffle tickets for the prizes you have collected.
Bingo or quiz night
Have fun and organise a Bingo or quiz night with a fee per entry. Use some of the donated gifts you have received for the prizes. Again, you could use this event to sell the raffle tickets.
Pie and Pea supper nights
Ask your local butcher or supermarket for a donation of pork pies for your fundraising event. Organise a pie and peas supper night for friends, neighbours or parishioners with a charge for the supper night. Use this event to also sell the raffle tickets.
Keep fit class
Organise an aerobics/Zumba class with your friends/neighbours or family to keep fit and healthy and feel good, as well as raising funds for the Parish Appeal.
Have a clear out!
Organise your own online fundraising auction! There are various sites where you can set up an online auction of your unwanted clothes/items. Try eBay or Facebook marketplace. It's a great way to declutter and raise funds.
Sponsored walk
Challenge yourself to walk a certain number of miles and get sponsored for it! Walk as a group with friends or family. Make sure your group are also sponsored so that they can fundraise as well. If you’d like to plan a walk around town, why not organise a walk between different churches? Also, decide if your route needs to be buggy or wheelchair accessible for your walkers. Consider different distances for your walk so some people can walk a shorter route.
Wine and cheese evening
Enjoy meeting and socialising with family and friends, with a wine and cheese evening! Ask people to donate to be part of the fun.

Together, our Parish can make a difference for our brothers and sisters in Ukraine, through our Prayers, Fasting and Almsgiving, as we journey with them at this time.

Thank you for all your efforts.

Together we pray ….


“Loving God, we pray for the people of Ukraine, for all those suffering or afraid, that you will be close to them and protect them. We pray for world leaders, for compassion, strength and wisdom to guide their choices. We pray for the world that in this moment of crisis, we may reach out in solidarity to our brothers and sisters in need. May we walk in your ways so that peace and justice become a reality for the people of Ukraine and for all the world. Amen.”

Our Lady Queen of Peace - pray for us!
Lord Jesus, Prince of Peace - pray for us! 
St Joseph, Patron Saint of Families - pray for us!